Brendon Hartley is only 27 but he’s already a 24 Hours of Le Mans winner and World Endurance Championship title holder. Now the New Zealander is about to get his first taste at Formula 1.
Toro Rosso has confirmed that Hartley will replace Pierre Gasly at this weekend’s United States Grand Prix, which takes place at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.
Gasly himself only debuted two races ago with the Red Bull feeder team, replacing the struggling Daniil Kvyat, but he will be in Japan this weekend to contest the Super Formula Championship season finale.
Kvyat will be racing this weekend as well. He’s been called in to replace former teammate Carlos Sainz who has joined Renault. The French team signed up Sainz in September as a replacement for Jolyon Palmer.
Hartley, who currently drives for Porsche in the WEC, is a former Red Bull junior driver who tested for Toro Rosso twice during 2009. Since then he’s gained experience in many different categories, including Formula Renault, GP2 and of course as an LMP1 driver in the WEC.
“This opportunity came as somewhat of a surprise, but I never did give up on my ambition and childhood dream to reach F1,” Hartley said in a statement. “I have grown and learnt so much since the days when I was the Red Bull and Toro Rosso reserve driver, and the tough years I went through made me stronger and even more determined.”